Agenda and minutes

Overview and Scrutiny Commission - Thursday, 3 May 2012 7.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Fourth Floor, Easthampstead House, Bracknell. View directions

Contact: Priya Patel  01344 352233

Note No. Item



Apologies for Absence/Substitute Members

To receive apologies for absence and to note the attendance of any substitute members.


The Commission noted the attendance of the following substitute member:


Councillor Worrall for Councillor Ms Whitbread



Minutes and Matters Arising pdf icon PDF 61 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission held on 29 March 2012.


RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 29 March 2012 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.


Matters Arising


A Working Group made up of Councillors Leake, Gbadebo, Thompson and Wade had been established to examine the Communications Strategy; an initial meeting would be held on 10 May 2012.


Information relating to questions raised about School Improvement Officers, E+ card use in pay and display car parks and performance indicators relating to special educational needs had been circulated to Commission members following the meeting.



Declarations of Interest and Party Whip

Members are asked to declare any personal or prejudicial interests and the nature of that interest, including the existence and nature of the party whip, in respect of any matter to be considered at this meeting.


There were no declarations of interest relating to any items on the agenda, nor any indications that members would be participating whist under the party whip.



Urgent Items of Business

Any other items which, pursuant to Section 100B(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972, the Chairman decides are urgent.


There were no urgent items of business.


Public Participation

To receive submissions from members of the public which have been submitted in advance in accordance with the Council’s Public Participation Scheme for Overview and Scrutiny.


There were no items submitted under the Public Participation Scheme.


Community Safety pdf icon PDF 34 KB

Meeting as the Crime and Disorder Committee, to receive reports on, and to consider:

a)      The performance of the Community Safety Partnership in 2011-12 and the Community Safety Plan for 2011-14.

b)      Changes to policing affecting Bracknell Forest, particularly an update on the creation of the Police and Crime Panel for Thames Valley, and the election of the Police Commissioner.

c)      The proposed Designated Public Place Order for Bracknell town centre.

Additional documents:


RESOLVED that Mr Juna khan, Chairman of the Thames Valley Police Authority, be co-opted onto the membership of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission for this meeting.


Timothy Wheadon, Chairman of the Bracknell Forest Community Safety Partnership, summarised the partnership’s structure and said that 2011/12 had been another successful year, with Bracknell Forest being one of the safest borough in Berkshire.  Ian Boswell, Community Safety Manager, presented an update on the work and resourcing of the Community Safety Partnership.  The update included an overview of crime statistics, notable successes and key challenges.


Community Safety Partnership


The Commission was informed that during 2011-12 the overall level of crime in Bracknell Forest had fallen by 17%.  Across the whole of the Thames Valley Police area only Wokingham and Chilterns Police Areas had recorded more improved scores.  During the same period Bracknell Forest had been the only Thames Valley Police area to record positively for both crime reduction and crime detection.  The reduction of Serious Acquisitive Crime, a category that included burglary, vehicle crime and robbery, had been a notable success with a reduction of almost 30.4% when compared to the same period the previous year.  A significantly better performance than any other area within the Thames Valley Police area, and a favourable performance compared to other borough’s in the Council’s ‘family group’ nationally.


Following a year on year decline, levels of anti-social behaviour in the Borough over the past year had risen by 4.2% when compared to the previous year.  Of particular concern was the number of assaults being reported by the Ambulance Service which had seen a significant increase in recent months and work was taking place with the Ambulance Service to try and identify the reasons why there had been such a marked increase and assess the reliability of this data.


The key challenges for the Community Safety Partnership for the coming year were:


  • Continuing to reduce crime figures
  • CCT and Automatic Number Plate Recognition
  • Tackling public perceptions of crime
  • The introduction of Police Commissioners


Members commended the Partnership on the reduction in crime achieved in 2011-12.  Arising from Members’ questions and comments the following points were noted:


  • Every incident recorded on CADIS represents a case of anti-social behaviour as seen by the person who reported it, an inevitably there was a degree of error in the data
  • The incidents of anti-social behaviour recorded on CADIS built up a picture of activity in an area and often provided useful intelligence of other more serious crimes for example information reported to CADIS has directly contributed to the identification and closure of five crack houses in the Borough, which in turn led to a 90% reduction in antisocial behaviour in those areas
  • The police force in Bracknell Forest was split into three teams:  Patrol teams, neighbourhood police teams and CID
  • The Bracknell Forest Local Police Area was made up of 84 full time police officers, 22 PCSOs and 35 Special Constables
  • The Special Constables each worked an average of 3 or 4  ...  view the full minutes text for item 73.



Executive Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 16 KB

Forthcoming items on the Executive Forward Plan of a corporate nature are attached for consideration.

Additional documents:


The Commission considered items on the Executive Forward Plan relating to corporate issues and the following points were noted:


·         The Service Plans were reviewed annually and detailed the actions that the Council would take over the coming year

·         The Bracknell Town Centre Regeneration Committee was focusing on delivering the regeneration scheme.  It was considered that the introduction of the new National Planning Policy Framework did not pose a significant risk to the scheme at the current time

·         Discretionary rate relief decisions related to buildings used for charitable and community uses

·         A fuller description of the purpose of decisions would assist in understanding


The Commission expressed concern about the lack of information about consultation processes and the purpose of the decision that many items displayed.  It was agreed that these concerns would be fed back to the Corporate Management Team. 


It was agreed that the suggestion of having a presentation on the Service Plan approval process  at a future meeting of the Commission would be followed up by the Chairman.





Work Programme Update pdf icon PDF 64 KB

To note the progress against the Overview and Scrutiny Commission work programme for 2011-12.


The Commission received a report setting out a summary of progress made against the Overview and Scrutiny Commission work programme for 2011-12.


The Commission was informed that the status of all the actions against the Environment, Culture and Communities Overview and Scrutiny Panel were on course for completion.  Delays in the enactment of the Health and Social Care Bill had delayed the work of the Heath Overview and Scrutiny Panel.


The Commission noted the report.


Date of Next Meeting

12 July 2012.


The Commission noted that, other than the annual meeting, the next meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission would take place on 12 July 2012.